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More Installation Dilemmas

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by kh395269, Apr 18, 2008.

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  1. kh395269

    kh395269 New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2008
    Messages:
    89
    Loc:
    CT
    Ok, a few guys (friends of my husband) came out today to price out the installation of my Napoleon insert. There were a couple of issues that came out of it. One owns 2 pellet stoves in his own home and both are certified chimney guys to give you some background.

    1.) They both felt that I needed to have fresh air. They thought the vents in the flashing surrounding would only supply enough air to keep the blowers going. They discussed the option of putting the fresh air vent through to the basement, but then thought that would draw too much air from the furnace which is directly below the fireplace. So, they determined that it would probably be best to drill a hole in the back of the fireplace with a small vent outside. My concern with this is what happens if I ever decide to remove the insert and not replace it? Would my fireplace not be usable unless that is patched?

    2.) My living room is rather small and has larger than average opening to the kitchen (but not huge), at the far end of the room. The guy with 2 pellets stoves said that he believed it would become very hot in that room to the point where it will chase us out of that room. Do you agree with that statement? Will it be too hot? That room is where we probably spend the most time at home, other than the kitchen. He actually said we would have been better off getting a freestanding stove on the basement. We figured we would be heating wasted space down there and the warmth would not make it to the main floor. He said we would could have put small vents in the rooms, but I thought that was against most fire codes? He also said (it wouldn't look pretty), but we could install the insert in the basment?

    Anyway, after all that, I just don't know what to do now? I could even sell this if we decided it wasn't going to work out as I got it cheap enought that I probably could even make a small profit. What would you do? TIA

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  2. Xena

    Xena Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2005
    Messages:
    2,512
    Loc:
    South Shore MA
    Is there room to run the fresh air intake up the chimney?
    I think Rod has mentioned installing many inserts that way,
    and I've seen at least one member here (lmei007)
    installed his that way.

    I have a fan pointing at my stove. It pushes the
    air into the room, forcing the warm
    into other rooms. It works great. Got the tip on here.
    That said, our living room is warmer than the rest of the
    house by a few degrees but we hardly get chased out.
  3. Philip

    Philip New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2007
    Messages:
    114
    Loc:
    Huntsville, AL
    I'm just throwing this out there as something to think about. Since you have an insert, you may not be able to use this information.

    I have a freestanding stove and a 2" outside air hose connected to the stove. What I discovered is that there is a 6" gap between where the 2" hose attaches to the sheet metal housing around the stove and the firebox. So when the stove is not running and pulling air in from the outside, the air still comes into the house thru the 2" outside air hose. Had I known this before I put the hole in the wall, I might have opted to just open the window (which is very near the stove) a crack when the stove is running. At the very least I would have and still may put a gate on the 2" hose so I can stop the outside air from coming into the house when the stove is off.

    As far as the stove being too big for the room, I don't think so, but I only have one pellet stove and I've only used it for one season and I live in the South, so I may not know what I'm talking about! :) But in my readings of this forum I have read several people who were very disappointed with the heat output of their pellet stove, but I don't recall reading about anyone who thought their pellet stove was too large. My stove is in a big room (750 sq') and I have a 5' wide doorway into the kitchen that is 24' away from the stove. Without the use of a fan the kitchen stays within 2-3 degrees of the room where the stove is. If you use a fan as Zeta suggested, I think you'll do just fine.
  4. pegdot

    pegdot New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2007
    Messages:
    415
    Loc:
    Upstate, SC
    Running a pipe to the top of the chimney for fresh air is the way to go. A little extra expense but cheaper/easier than repairing a hole in the chimney wall.
  5. Shooter

    Shooter New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2008
    Messages:
    123
    Loc:
    Michigan
    KH, I have an insert that works amazingly well at heating the entire home. My first inclination was to install a freestanding stove in the full basement until wanting to try the insert route. There was a propane DV type fireplace that I gutted out (the gas lines, equip) as it was never used....too much propane for just cosmetics and the fan noise was obnoxious.

    How does the fireplace work for you up to this point? Can you use the fireplace effectiveness as a measure for how a pellet stove will heat the house in terms of distribution? I used the propane fireplace to heat the whole house for a test. The furnace was shut off and I let the propane fireplace do the work so I could see how the heat would move through the house. In my case it was more than adequate even to the bedrooms. Can you do this or is the fireplace an older one not in use?
  6. sylvestermcmonkey

    sylvestermcmonkey Member

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2008
    Messages:
    80
    Loc:
    The Land that Time Forgot
    FWIW I have an ash dump that leads to the basement. I left it open thinking if it draws air from the basement that's fine. I was surprised how much draft it pulls - you can feel it with your hand, which isn't there when the stove's not running. I don't understand however their concern about drawing air from the furnace. Surely they're not concerned about depriving it of combustion air? Is there a basement window you could partially open?

    The idea of drawing fresh air from the flue with a coaxial / collinear vent is the best one. No holes to cut or cover up. I didn't plan on having to line my flue all the way to the top but if I did I probably would have installed that kind of fresh air duct.
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